Pet parents fall into 2 main categories: those that proactively protect their pet from fleas and ticks and those that treat their pet for fleas and ticks only after they’re present. Pet parents who choose to be proactive and protect their dog or cat from fleas and ticks utilize products that are used directly on their pet: topical drops and collars. Pet parents who wait to treat their dog or cat once fleas and ticks are present will need a combination of products that will not only treat their pet directly but also treat their environment to stop impending infestations.
Let’s talk about the importance of 3 Way Protection: On Pet, In Home, In Yard
On Pet Protection
Protecting your dog or cat is the most important step in the fight against fleas and ticks. In addition to being a nuisance, fleas and ticks pose serious health threats for pets. Flea and tick infestations can lead to distress because of itchy, raw ‘hot spots’ on the skin as well as anemia due to blood loss. Dogs and cats can also suffer from Flea Allergy Dermatitis which is an allergy to flea saliva that is injected into the body during feeding. This allergy starts early in life and effects the rear and hind legs of the animal resulting in redness, scabbing and hair loss. Flea Allergy Dermatitis is the #1 allergy in dogs and proactively protecting pets can avoid all of the pain and discomfort associated with this allergy.
Not only do fleas and ticks cause physical discomfort to pets they can also harbor and transmit parasites and diseases like:
- Tapeworms (Dipylidium caninum)
- Cat scratch fever (Bartonella henselae)
- Murine typhus (Rickettsie typhi)
- Plague (Yersinia pestis and C. felis)
- Lyme disease (I. scapularis and I. pacificus)
“Lyme disease remains the most common vector-borne disease in the United States despite increased awareness and availability of effective control measures.”
These conditions not only pose threats to the health of the pet, they can be contracted by humans as well. It is clear that protecting dogs and cats from fleas and ticks also protects humans from dangerous parasites and diseases.
Products like HUG Pro and Plus topical drops and HUG Plus Collars, Shampoos and Sprays combine an adulticide with an Insect Growth Regulator to not only kill adult fleas and ticks but reduce the likelihood of further reproduction and infestation by stopping the flea life cycle. On Pet protection is the first crucial step to complete flea and tick defense.
In Home Protection
There are many challenges to flea and tick control. The first challenge is actually recognizing and diagnosing the problem. Even pet owners who are informed about fleas and ticks may not believe that their pet is or could be infested. They do not proactively treat their pet to prevent fleas and ticks which opens up the possibility for infestations, not only on their animal, but within their home as well.
Fleas can feed on a variety of hosts including dogs, cats and humans. Under ideal conditions, fleas can survive for months, feeding and producing eggs by the thousands at a rate of up to 50 per day. Flea larvae prefer dark, protected areas within the home like carpeting, bedding and furniture where they can feed on flea feces and other organic material. Flea larvae then turn into flea pupae that can lie dormant for months, just waiting for a new host, such as your dog, to come along and feed from.
“For every visible adult flea, many more eggs, larvae and pupae are in the environment… adult fleas account for only about 5% of the total flea infestation. This means that eggs, larvae, and pupae comprise the other 95% of a flea infestation.”
It is important to remember that for every adult flea you see there are many more flea eggs, larvae and pupae in the environment. It is vital to treat infested areas as soon as the problem is recognized in order to stop the flea life cycle; this includes treating carpets, pet bedding, upholstered furniture and draperies.
Products like Hartz UltraGuard Plus Flea and Tick Carpet Powder, Home Spray and Foggers gives pet parents the ability to quickly kill adult fleas and ticks threatening their pets. They also contain an Insect Growth Regulator to stop the flea life cycle, halt the current infestation and prevent future infestations. It is important to treat the home properly when fleas and ticks are present in order to truly stop the infestation. Only treating the pet can leave the door open for continued infestation because the fleas and ticks will continue their life cycle within the home environment.
In Yard Protection
As the last piece of complete 3 Way Protection, safeguarding your yard from fleas and ticks is just as important as protecting your pet and your home. The flea and tick population begins and proliferates outside. The tick population has grown 20x in the past 10 years and one third of pet parents consider Lyme Disease a very or somewhat serious problem. Controlling the tick population is an important part in keeping your pet safe from tick-borne illnesses like Lyme Disease and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.
Ticks, unlike fleas, only spend 10% of their lifetime on a host. Several tick species drop off of the host to molt, or in the case of adult ticks to lay eggs, and then wait for another host in order to feed and continue their life cycle. A single female tick can produce up to 18,000 eggs and within a few weeks those eggs hatch and the cycle continues. The tick life cycle can not only take 1 to 3 years of time to complete, but some species of ticks can remain alive, unfed, for up to a year. It is important to kill ticks in their breeding ground, before they, and the diseases they carry, can find a way on to your dog or cat.
Hartz UltraGuard Yard & Kennel Spray provides a barrier outside of your home, by killing fleas and ticks before they come inside your home and put your pets and family at risk.